Myanmar’s navy rulers this week stripped 16 shadow authorities members and political activists of their citizenship, saying these working in hiding to oppose junta rule had “left the nation without end” to commit illegal actions towards the state.
Introduced on March 4 and seven, the revocations invoked Part 16 of Myanmar’s 1982 Citizenship Legislation in a transfer described as unlawful by victims, attorneys and human rights activists who mentioned the nation’s navy, which overthrew civilian rule in a Feb. 1, 2021 coup, had no authority to subject the order.
Named within the junta’s transfer had been 10 members of the shadow Nationwide Unity Authorities (NUG) arrange in secure areas of the nation to oppose navy rule, together with Zaw Wai Soe, Ye Mon, Lwin Ko Latt, Khin Ma Ma Nyo, Aung Myo Min and Zin Mar Aung.
Additionally listed within the announcement had been six distinguished political activists together with Min Ko Naing, Myo Yan Naung Thein, Maung Maung Aye, Ei Pencilo and widespread singer Saung Oo Hlaing.
Responding to the junta’s order, NUG members named within the transfer mentioned that Myanmar’s navy leaders haven’t any jurisdiction to make rulings based mostly on nationwide legislation.
“We have now referred to as the Army Council a terrorist group ever because the starting of the coup,” NUG Dwelling and Immigration Minister Lwin Ho Latt informed RFA, referring to the junta’s ruling State Administration Council.
“This group has no proper to use the 1982 Citizenship Legislation. It isn’t the respectable authorities of the nation, so I don’t assume this transfer will have an effect on us in any respect,” he added.
NUG Minister of Commerce and Trade Khin Ma Ma Myo agreed. “They’re an unlawful authorities that unseated a respectable authorities and now kills and tortures folks,” he mentioned. “They’re the alternative of what a democracy and true federal authorities must be.
“Truly, we because the nation’s elected representatives must be those imposing the legislation towards them. The folks already know who must be accepted as residents and who ought to rule this nation,” he mentioned.
NUG members haven’t taken citizenship in another nation, a transfer that will violate Part 16 of the 1982 Citizenship Legislation, and the junta’s revocation of members’ citizenship can have no impact on NUG outreach to different nations by way of diplomatic channels, he added.
“We have now not left Myanmar to this present day. We’re nonetheless working inside the nation’s borders,” mentioned Ei Thinzar Maung, NUG Deputy Minister for Girls, Youth and Kids. “We’re nonetheless alive and finishing up the revolution, so the navy’s announcement has no impact on us in any respect. I don’t assume we have to react to it.”
Reached for remark, junta Deputy Info Minister Zaw Min Tun mentioned that by revoking political opposition figures’ citizenship, navy authorities had acted in response to the legislation.
“Article 16 says that in the event you go away the nation completely and violate present legal guidelines, the federal government has the correct to cancel your citizenship,” he mentioned. “It was inside the authorities’s authority to do that. We took this transfer as a result of [the persons named in the order] have violated Article 16.”
‘Nothing to do with the legislation’
A veteran excessive court docket lawyer mentioned nonetheless that revoking the citizenship of NUG authorities members and political activists was not in step with provisions of the legislation.
“An individual loses their citizenship solely after they take up citizenship overseas. It may well’t be misplaced for another motive,” he mentioned, talking on situation of anonymity for safety causes.
“One might be sentenced to dying for treason or for betraying the nation, however even then one’s citizenship can’t be revoked,” he mentioned.
The junta’s transfer towards the NUG members and activists is just an try to destroy the navy’s political opposition and has nothing in any respect to do with the legislation, he mentioned.
“The junta is simply looking for methods to take away their opposition,” agreed Aung Myo Min, the NUG Human Rights Minister. “It is a violation of human rights.”
Homes, different property seized
Junta authorities have in the meantime stepped up their confiscation of property owned by opposition figures, with almost 100 homes belonging to Nationwide League for Democracy (NLD) members seized inside the final 13 months, 60 of them taken because the starting of 2022, NLD sources say.
Authorities have additionally sealed off property belonging to members of different opposition teams, together with the Democracy Social gathering for New Society (DPNS) and the Chin Nationwide League for Democracy (CNLD), sources say.
“They regard anybody opposing them as their enemy, mentioned DPNS joint secretary Hnn Hnin Hmwe. “They’ve been making arbitrary arrests, killing folks, looting and burning homes, raping ladies, confiscating houses and destroying public property to unfold concern among the many folks,” she mentioned.
Properties belonging to Civil Disobedience Motion police captain Tin Mun Tun, movie director Ko Pauk, actress Chit Thu Wai, pop singer Chan Chan and distinguished social media activists have additionally been cordoned off by junta authorities, sources say.
Singer Chan Chan mentioned in a posting on social media that others resisting navy rule in Myanmar have misplaced greater than their houses, nonetheless.
“There are lots of who’ve already misplaced their lives or limbs. Their sacrifices are a lot better,” she mentioned. “I’m solely shedding my property, which I could possibly exchange afterward. I anticipated way back that this might occur, and I’m decided to try on now till evil is defeated by good.”
Different individuals suspected of anti-coup exercise and summoned to look in court docket have had their houses confiscated after they failed to show up, mentioned Kyaw Lin, chairman of the Insein Township Election Fee in Yangon.
“They informed me on the cellphone to come back to court docket, however I didn’t go, and so they mentioned they’d ship one other summons together with a warrant. They mentioned that in the event that they must name a 3rd time, they are going to take away my home,” he mentioned.
Relations of individuals sought by the police have additionally seen their homes seized, and retailers and different buildings have been confiscated, with 5 homes within the Taze township of northern Myanmar’s Sagaing area closed due to their house owners’ connection to anti-junta militia teams.
A barbecue store in Mandalay’s Aungmyaythazan district and social welfare affiliation within the Maha Aungmyay township had been additionally closed in February, sources mentioned.
Reported by RFA’s Myanmar Service. Translated by Khin Maung Nyane. Written in English by Richard Finney.